Maldives Industrial Fisheries Company Limited (MIFCO) has acquired 54,502 tonnes of fish, resulting in a significant disbursement of MVR 91.7 million to fishermen. This brings the total disbursement by MIFCO to MVR 965 million for the current year.
The company increased the purchase price for fish from MVR 17 per kilogram to MVR 25 per kilogram on September 16, which has since led to the successful procurement of 9,401 metric tonnes of fish.
Despite increased fish quantities sourced from fishermen, MIFCO faces challenges in disbursing payments due to its obligation to purchase fish at a loss. The need for government assistance in funding compounds this situation. Delays in distributing funds to fishermen are attributed to difficulties securing the required funds from the Finance Ministry. These funds are necessary to cover the losses incurred by MIFCO, exacerbated by fluctuations in fish purchase prices.
MIFCO is undertaking modernisation efforts to transform into a profitable enterprise and address challenges during the fishing season. After these upgrades, MIFCO’s cold storage capacity will rise by 48 per cent. Additionally, the government plans to increase freezing capacity by 37 per cent. MIFCO has also acquired three additional boats to enhance its fish procurement capabilities.